Friday, October 12, 2012

The Chainmail Project Continues

The project still continues in my spare time, believe it or not.  Keeping the finished panels in this boot box when I am done with them to keep them out of the way.  Last night I set the pile on the bathroom scale and I have knitted together ten pounds of chainmail.
This may not look like much, but this is somewhere around nine hundred feet of sixteen gauge wire.
When I look at it up close it does look kind of impressive.  Until I realize how many months I have been working at this and how many months more I have to go.
I started out using a little bulletin board and T-pins until the pieces got too heavy and started pulling out the pins.  Then I got this board and put some brass nails along the top and sides.  At first I was holding it in my lap while I worked.  Then I got a better idea.
I built a box to hold the board at an angle that would also serve as a toolbox for all of my gear and make the whole kit portable so I could work on it anywhere.  It would have been better if I had made it so it would fold closed, I guess.  But if I did that then all of my rings would have gotten mixed up the first time I picked it up so I abandoned that idea and left it this way.
I even lined the inside and the bottom of the box with black felt after I stained everything.  That way it can slide around on the table and not mark anything up.  Especially important if I decide to do any work at the kitchen table. (grin)

Anyway, I figure I am somewhere around one fifth of the way done with enough panels to make the tunic I am imagining.  Another four thousand feet of wire or so and my work here will be through! (rolls his eyes)

I'd been in the market for a department store mannequin, thinking that would be the thing to drape this stuff around and start combining the pieces on and figure out how I am going to secure it.  Unfortunately there don't seem to be too many places around here stocking those things.  I'd like one with a head so I can also make the coif piece when I get done with the tunic.

Watcher and Miz Twang called me the other night.  She had found someone selling those half-torso mannequins locally for a good price and she was going to pick one up for me.  They are both so nice to me.  Even though it wasn't exactly what I envisioned, that thing will take up much less room and won't be nearly as creepy as having a full sized department store mannequin standing in my office.  I could just imagine walking in here half asleep and scaring the heck out of myself with that thing. (grin)

I tend to be a little jumpy first thing in the mornings.

During my conversation with Watcher he said "You know, I never really thought you would start doing this.  I just thought it might be a cool idea for stuff we could sell at conventions.  Maybe something we could keep in mind as a future project.  But you just went ahead and did it!"

Like I told him, I started looking at how it was done and looking for information.  Then I started figuring it out and making rings.  About that same time we got a Netflix account so I sat down and started watching old teevee shows and knitting chainmail and the rest is history.

In a way it's been therapeutic.  For my mind, anyway.  It takes just enough of my concentration to keep my mind focused away from whatever might be bothering me at the time, but still allows enough slack that I can watch "Adam-12" and "Emergency" and half a dozen different anime shows to fill my mind with happy noise.

It's been hell on my hands, though.  The repetitive motions are strengthening my forearms so I don't have as much trouble with the tendonitis, but I wake up every morning with my hands stiff and sore and covered with tiny cuts and strange callouses.  And I have had to dig more than one sliver of metal out of my skin.

Anyway, a while ago Scotty asked how the project was going.

So there it is...


  1. I'm impressed! It's like knitting with testosterone! Well done sir.

    1. Lolamouse- Knitting with testosterone.. I like it! (grin)

  2. Replies
    1. Scotty-It takes up all of my spare time these days.